Rites of Passage ceremony for
Krobo children in Somanya
Eastern region, Ghana, West Africa
art, photography, digital
I feel that the real strengths of the United States are
its culture, intellect, industry,
commerce, and financial services. U.S. culture has
been exported globally. One huge
aspect is its’ entertainment industry, which
is routinely criticized for its production of shallow
pop music, and violent movies and television shows.
U.S. intellectual power is displayed in its societal
developments and day-to-day modern conveniences. The
U.S. will continue to
be the manufacturing leader,
but will only employ 10% of the population because
of technology. America will remain the only superpower
because of its cohesiveness as a unit. The industrial
and commercial sectors will grow due to manufacturing
and export of goods, and the financial services of
savings, loans, and the occasionally fluctuating, but
value of America’s currency in the
My predictions for Africa are based on my own observations of West Africa and
are limited to Ghanaian society. I saw that the government is focused on making
infrastructure growth and development
a priority. Technology and education
are viewed as paths to economic empowerment.
Private wireless companies offer satellite cable and cellular phone services
as viable alternative solutions to the inadequate local telecommunication industry.
Internet cafés provide public access to computers for on-line web browsing.
Educational institutions are making computer labs a priority so the students
can learn modern marketable skills and to be prepared for the global workplace.
Universities are also exploring on-line distance learning as a solution for students
to receive global educations without the expensive cost of international travel.
The following predictions are based on my
recent observations of major technological
advances by America and other developed
In the future, our use of technology will continue to increase
dramatically. Technology makes it possible for the world
to rapidly become a virtual “global village.”
All nations will become increasingly inter-connected and
inter-dependent. The welfare of the entire world is directly
or indirectly affected by the welfare of individual nations,
and political isolation will no longer be an option.
will be new openings for industrial growth. These openings
will come from
robots doing the work of the masses, along with increasing
consumer demand for
new products and services, and computers. Technology
will allow advancement and
increased access for humanitarian aid, which will be
disseminated to underdeveloped
countries to improve the quality of life of all citizens.
Societies will increasingly interact
and learn from each other. Some opportunities for access
to global information
include the Internet, improved telecommunication technologies,
and affordable transportation for overseas travel. Not
all interactions will be positive unfortunately,
as evidenced are new health threats (AIDS, SARS), economic
turmoil (WTF conflicts),
and increased terrorism (9/11).
It seems to
me, the real strengths of the European Union are its regionalized cultures and
integrated economy. All European countries have one or more major
industry talents. This intense specialization of talent means that European nations
have to interact to supply their own needs from each other. Countries also have
the individual freedom to excel at what they do best. The new common currency,
the Euro, will further encourage trade across borders. Europe's diversity is
also its weakness, as language differences can be a barrier to communication.
Accessible technological translators will help address this issue.
In North America, Canada will have skilled labor, and Mexico, unskilled labor.
In East Asia, there will be an economic contest between Japan and China. East
Asia will be the fastest growing region in the world in technology as well as
population. They need and will begin to export services, not just goods.
traveled in two very different regions of Brazil, and saw
that development and usage of technology in Brazil ranges
significantly based on the needs of the community. Brazil
has one of the most extremely skewed distributions of wealth
in the world. The cities of Rio de Janeiro and Salvador
are prime examples of this disparity. In Rio de Janeiro,
the second largest city in Brazil well known for its beaches
and its tourist attractions, is economically a service
industry center. It has remained a key center for oil and
telecommunication multinationals, businesses and conference
centers. On one hand, there are wealthy neighborhoods such
as Copacabana, Ipanema and Leblon. On the other hand, the
poor are forced into squatter settlements, Shantytowns,
known as favelas. In the future, technologicy and the infrastructure
will develop when the city solves its financial and social
inequality problem by modernizing the favelas and dealing
with the shortage of utilities for all of its citizens,
regardless of their race or social class.
I also traveled
to the city of Salvador in the state of Bahia, Brazil,
home to the largest population of people of African descent
of Africa. In Bahia, agricultural technology is important
because of the proximity to the Amazon region and the Mata
Atlântica, a strip of forest along Brazil's coast
that has most of the country's natural herbs and medicines.
Technology has also become critical during Carnival in
Brazil, one of the largest parties on the planet. Information
through various media channels is necessary to coordinate
the different events, performing groups, participants,
and millions of tourists. Visiting during the Carnival
season, I was bombarded by the media as soon as I stepped
off the plane through multiple broadcasting and advertising
methods such as televisions, radios, loud speakers and
amplification devices. I predict tourism will continue
to increase its dependence on technology as more travelers
buy tickets and create their own itineraries using the
The main factors that will influence these
changes in the years to come are: demographics,
resources and the
environment, trade and finance, technology,
and governments. Demographically, the
will grow the most in poor
and developing countries. There will be an over-exploitation
of natural resources and
the environment. For nations’ trade
and finance, there will be the growth
institutions. Technological innovations
at an ever-increasing rate. The
most successful technological innovations
will also be the ones that are the
most profitable, for they will be the
These predictions are based on personal
theories, observations, technological
advances and trends.